FINANCES & THE END TIMES Stephen R. Phinney
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the New American Revised Standard (NASB), 1960, 1962, 1963, 1971, 1973 by the Lockman Foundation, are used by permission. Finances & The End Times ISBN: 978-1-300-40499-6 Printed in the United States of America Copyright 2008, 2009, 2011 & 2012 by Dr. Stephen R. Phinney IOM America Exchanging Life Publishing Kathy Hill, Managing Editor P.O. Box 71 Sterling, Kansas 67579 (602) 292-2985 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Phinney, Stephen Ray Finances & The End Times /by Dr. Stephen R. Phinney. 2012 IOM America Sterling Kansas
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS My Wife Jane: Jane, my children and grandchildren have been the greatest influencers in my life when it comes to the topic of finances. For they have watched me learn, many times the hard way, the Biblical mandates and guidelines of managing God’s resources and provisions. Each have been there as I dropped the ball, pick it back up and walk forward until I discovered the truth behind God’s miraculous reasons for money, possessions, the end times and eternity. Randy Alcorn:
Randy, and his book “Money, Possessions and Eternity,”
have been used by God to stabilize my eternal view of finances. Randy, I thank you for being such a Godly and positive role model to me, my family, and our ministry and now through this book. Jack Taylor:
Over 30 years ago, while interning at Grace Fellowship
International in Denver, I was given the privilege to get to know Jack and particularly his work “God’s Miraculous Plan of Economy.” That book not only changed my perspective on money but on how my identity is directly connected to my wallet. Thank you Jack once again for being a vessel of God to move the truth of stewardship to a new level of integrity. Bill Gothard:
I was given the honor to serve Bill by providing Christ as
Life discipleship to him and his team in the late 70’s. It was through this blessed opportunity that I was given the privilege to study and research his 18 principles on finances, which became the foundational outline for my book. I not only acknowledge Bill and his refined investment in Godly finances but I commend him for his life’s work & devotion to Biblical truth and accuracy – a quality rarely seen in our world today. Bill, like many others, I thank you for providing resources to keep the next generation equipped in providing sound Biblical teachings to a hurting world – your legacy goes on in thousands of disciples. David Jeremiah: Many people know Dr. David Jeremiah as a powerful teacher and preacher of the Word, but I know him as the man God used to open my eyes to the profound and simple truths of how money, the economy and the Antichrist are used by God to bring the final conclusion to the end times. I believe his book, “The Coming Economic Armageddon,” is the most Biblically sound book written on the topic to date. Even though his book does not
address the practical principles of finances, it was used by God to lead me to write a book that addresses both the end times and the practical helpful hints to managing money. I thank you David for having, and continuing to have, an impact in my life. Kathy Hill: Affectionately referred to as “Edikat,” Kathy is my Managing Editor. Together, through the years, Kathy and I have been blessed with the privilege of publishing many articles, booklets, books and ministry tools that have ministered to souls literally all over the world. My appreciation for her and her investment in eternal things is beyond the expression of words. God knew that my literary ministry wouldn’t have a chance without Jesus using workers like Kathy. Volunteers: Our ministry has been blessed with many volunteers, over 40 to date. Each of you knows who you are and the investment you continue to make in the Exchange Life Global Initiative! It is a privilege in Christ Jesus to work with each of you in order to advance the message of the Cross. Jane and I. the staff and Board of Advisers thank each of you!
TABLE OF CONTENTS WHY THIS BOOK
Knowing The Numbers
Nebuchadnezzar’s Plan of Economy
Biblical Points of Financial Freedom
Seven Principles of Financial Freedom
Proof of Financial Bondage
Purposes for Money and Possessions
Purpose of Money
CHAPTER 10: God’s Miraculous Provision
CHAPTER 11: Sixteen Lies of the Antichrist
CHAPTER 12: Recognizing God’s Correction
CHAPTER 13: Ten Signs of Reproof
CHAPTER 14: A Nation That Obeys Money
CHAPTER 15: Choose This Day
CHAPTER 16: Serving God Over Money
CHAPTER 17: Establish a Pattern of Giving
CHAPTER 18: Why Stay Out of Debt?
CHAPTER 19: Debt Controls Our Past/Present/Future
CHAPTER 20: Caramel Covered Rotting Apple
CHAPTER 21: Learning to Be Well Content
CHAPTER 22: The Rich vs. The Poor
CHAPTER 23: Responsibilities of the Family
CHAPTER 24: Special Care to the Poor
CHAPTER 25: What is Your Standard of Living?
CHAPTER 26: Humbly Suffer Need
CHAPTER 27: Advertisement Junky
CHAPTER 28: Resisting Sales and Bargains
CHAPTER 29: The Super Saver
CHAPTER 30: Being Held in Account
CHAPTER 31: Money Matters to God
CHAPTER 32: Poor Money Managers Are Thieves
CHAPTER 33: Loaning to Loved Ones
CHAPTER 34: Using Loved Ones for Financial Gain
CHAPTER 35: Spend Money on Home Education
CHAPTER 36: Financing Fun and Fellowship
CHAPTER 37: Financing A Homespun Ministry
CHAPTER 38: Price of a Working Mother
CHAPTER 39: Money and a Good Name
CHAPTER 40: Requirements of a Good Name
CHAPTER 41: Destruction of a Good Name
CHAPTER 42: Building Blocks of a Good Name
CHAPTER 43: Mastermind of Reputations
CHAPTER 44: Prayer and the Love of Money
CHAPTER 45: Power of Money and Prayer
CHAPTER 46: Praying for More Money
APPENDIX (Prayers & Additional Scriptures)
About the Author
Other Titles by Dr. Phinney
WHY THIS BOOK? In today’s Christian sphere, there are a myriad of different worldviews. Actually, many materials branded as “Christian” aren’t even biblically based. Because we have grown up in a “Christian” culture, we tend to believe that many aspects of our culture indeed are Christian in nature. Sayings like, “God will never give you more than you can handle,” “God helps those who help themselves,” and “What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger” are tossed around as sound Christian advice in many circles. The problem is, they aren’t biblical! My family and I have been greatly blessed by IOM and the Phinneys. Their counsel, discipleship, and love have been invaluable to us because of the sound biblical foundation that underlies all that they say and do. When I am encouraged and/or rebuked by Dr. Phinney, I am done so with evidence in Scripture. His influence in my life has greatly shaped my worldview to a more biblical, Christ-centered perspective. We first support IOM because we love the Phinneys and treasure them deeply in our hearts. We can’t wait to correspond with them through text, phone, and email and are always looking forward to the next time we can physically be around them. However, the reasoning behind our support for IOM is much deeper than that. We support IOM because they believe and teach the Word of God, they don’t water it down or sugarcoat it for approval by the masses. Their dedication to Truth has had a profound impact in our lives, and we want others to have that opportunity. I believe as you read this book, your experience will be much like ours – one of an encounter with the Lord. I have an utmost respect and reverence for the Biblical topic of money, stewardship and the endtimes and I believe Dr. Phinney handles this topic with the care and guidance of the Lord. Today holds the greatest opportunity to discuss this matter and we have found that the principles he presents in this book will probably be the best investment you have made this year!
-Rob Cornelius, Florida, USA
INTRODUCTION God says the rain falls on the just and the unjust. For our reading benefit, we could easily say the “money falls on the just and the unjust.” I cannot tell you how many times I have heard a believer ask, “Why is it that God allows the ungodly to prosper while Christians suffer with little?” The answer is found in reviewing the end-times. The way one spoils a rich kid is by allowing him to get sick from spoiling himself. As we look around at the end-times, we see an entire world prospering, but only for a season. As with all spoiled children, people of the world only focus on others to get what they want, in order to spend it on their own pleasures. “You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures” (James 4:3) Typically, God avoids supporting anything that gets in the way of true dependence on Him. Money has a way of leading people away from God, NOT to Him. God uses all things to lead each of His children to call out to Him – not, his banker. Believers are being awakened to the reality that their fight in life is not against flesh and blood, but the powers of darkness and the principalities of the air (Eph. 6:12). So many Christians today are deceived into thinking that what they see is what they are to battle. As the Lord draws near, we can be assured that our battle with the world, the flesh, and the devil will intensify. Worldly ideas of pop psychology will increase as the primary solution to our troubled minds. More rapidly than most of us realize, the questions people ask are based on worldly fables called philosophies of man. God is calling each of His children to call upon Him and He will deliver according to His divine Truth and Will. Fear of confronting the enemy has held most believers back from boldly going before the throne of God regarding the temptations and afflictions of the enemy. God’s greatest servants have always shared an appreciation of the magnificent power of prayer and the complete victory over Satan’s kingdom available to all believers, through the mighty Person and work of our Husband, Jesus Christ. The book of Ephesians is the New Testament handbook on spiritual, biblical prayer. Get to know this book like a handbook. The believer’s
emphasis in prayer must be upon a biblical and sound doctrinal approach to this subject. The Word of God recognizes that we encounter the three faces of Satan—the world, the flesh, and the devil. When a person becomes born-again, his/her relationship to everything in the physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional world completely changes. Since the believer is a citizen of heaven, he is given the power to face the enemy toe-to-toe. Scary? Well, look at it this way. Either we face him head-on or he will constantly be nipping at our heel—eating away our lives a little at a time. To resist the limited power of the enemy, one must submit therefore to God first, then resist the evil one and he will flee. It is a promise given to us by God (James 4:7). Because of our newly found relationship with God, all believers are marked targets for attack from God’s enemy—Satan. Where does he seem to attack first? The love of money, of course! Since the love of money is the root of Satan, I would think this would be his main area of attack. If he can get the Bride of Christ to love money more than her Husband, believers will then begin to worship money and ultimately, Satan – a simple scam from a complex enemy. Understanding that he is relentless in his attacks, believers must embrace the truth that the Father has given them a defense system—the power of prayer. Believers have a supernatural resource of wealth and riches in the grace and gifts bestowed upon us in the Lord Jesus Christ. The Truths are ours for claiming power, position, authority, and total victory over Satan’s world, which actually belongs to God the Father. The believer’s victory over the enemy is absolute when the enemy attempts to use God’s Truth to defeat us—his primary tactic of deception (2 Cor. 10:3-5). It is important we learn to pray aggressive biblical prayers for family and friends who we believe are struggling with the bondage of the love of money. My experience as a counselor is those that ARE in bondage to the love of money can’t read a book like this because of spiritual strongholds. Even if you’re not one of those, I suggest all readers to consider praying this prayer – it will make reading this book much more enjoyable. .
INTERCESSORY PRAYER FOR MONEY BONDAGE My dear heavenly Father, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, I bring myself before You and ask for the Holy Spirit's guidance that I might pray in the Spirit as You have taught me. I thank You, Father, that You have sovereign control over all my money or lack of it. I thank You for the level of material possessions that you have placed in my life. In the name of the Lord Jesus and as a priest of God, I ask for mercy and forgiveness for the sins of the love of money, which grieve You. I plead the sufficiency of the blood of Christ to meet the full penalty that my sins deserve. I claim back the ground I have yielded to the enemy in my life, which I have knowingly, or unknowingly, given to Satan by believing the enemy’s deception. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, I resist all of Satan’s activity to use Your money or possessions that You entrusted to me.
authority, which is given to me in my union with the Lord Jesus Christ, I pull down the strongholds which the kingdom of darkness has formed against me with the love of money. I smash, break, and destroy all those plans formed against my mind, will, emotions, and even my wallet.
I destroy in prayer the spiritual
blindness and deafness that Satan has perpetrated against me. I invite the Holy Spirit of God to bring the fullness of His power to convict, to bring to repentance, and to lead me into faith in the Lord Jesus Christ – my Savior. I cover myself with the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ and I break Satan’s power to blind me to the Truth of God. I believe that You, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit are leading me to claim my freedom in You and I thank You for the answer to my prayer. In the name of Jesus, I joyfully lay this prayer before You in the worthiness of His completed work. Amen. -Stephen Phinney
CHAPTER 1 KNOWING THE NUMBERS 11
This book will directly benefit those who care about the world of finances: personally, professionally, and politically. In my studies and research for a book I am writing (Book of Revelation, the Final Frontier), I am discovering many correlations between money, the end-times and personal suffering. God has given us many of warnings in the Scriptures about being good stewards of what He has entrusted to us. Years ago, when I was in debt, God gave me this message for my journal: “What is a steward? A steward is a simple messenger responding to a call to come to the Master’s house to pick up a package for delivery. The messenger is to take the package with care, protection, and diligence and complete the mission given. The package does not belong to the messenger. It belongs to the Master. What is in the package is not as important as caring for the package and with all diligence, completing the mission with excellence. It is none of your business to know the Master’s motives, what is in the package, or details of the person you are giving it to; but to simply deliver the package in the same condition that it was given to you. It is only a thief who will take from a package that does not belong to him. Stephen, this is why the enemy comes to kill, steal, and destroy. He wants all of My packages to arrive empty and destroyed. If I truly own everything, it means he will attempt to destroy everything I give you to steward. Do you see, My son? Being a good steward of what I give you does not have anything to do with being perfect with what I give you. It has everything to do with the mission I have placed behind the gift itself.” God has to simplify His Word for my frail and weak mind.
illustration was simple and to the point, but it worked. Two years later, I was completely out of debt. There is a passage in I Kings that will become the foundation of this book. “If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him. But the people did not answer him a word” (1 Kings 18:21).
Elijah proposed a test to his opportunists. Two altars would be built. The prophets of Baal would call on their god and Elijah would call on his God. Whichever one answered by fire would be the one whom they would serve. I think you already know who won! If not, review 1 Kings 18:17-41. In every generation, God's supernatural power will be tested against the competency of man and the Antichrist, as well as, their ability to fix the fix God has fixed on them. One of the tests that God places in our lives, if not the most frequent, is that of our personal finances. Stewardship communicates character - or lack of it. What we do with what God has entrusted to us will affect our eternal weight of glory. God challenges each of us to: â€œBring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive itâ€? (Mal. 3:10, KJV). God is looking for men and women who will listen to His Words, obey them, and be willing to live out His financial principles. This includes demonstrating to a skeptical, unbelieving, indebted world that He lives and rewards those who diligently seek Him (Heb. 11:6). So many Christians today spend hundreds and thousands of dollars to learn how to become ministers of the Gospel, but continue mounting massive debt. Only 6% of our churchgoers are 100% debt free. Men of honorable scriptural convictions will not only influence history, but will raise a new foundation of godly believers who will communicate the real Gospel of Truth. I encourage all of us to embrace the following:
TEN PRIMARY CONVICTIONS OF THE WORD:
God alone is sovereign. The Word of God (Christian Bible) is His Divine and inspired Word and the final authority guide for my life.
My purpose in life is to seek God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit with my whole mind, will, and emotions and to build my life's objectives around His priorities.
My body is the living temple of God and must not be defiled by any lusts, doctrinal falsehoods, and/or idols.
I must attend a church that teaches the foundational Truths of the Word of God as His absolute Words to His children.
My life, wife, children, and grandchildren belong to the Lord. They are the vessels in which God delivers His Truth to the NEXT generation.
My daily activities and thoughts must never weaken the scriptural convictions of my brother and sisters in Christ.
My marriage, or plan thereof, is a lifelong commitment to God and to my spouse. I agree to only accept the Truth that one man + one woman = one flesh.
My personal, professional, and political finances are a trust from God and must be earned and stewarded according to the Divine Scriptures.
My words must be in complete and perfect harmony with the Word of God as I teach, preach, and live out the indwelt Christian life.
10. My mind and body's affections must be set on the things above in heaven, not on the things in or on the earth We have so much to learn in our financial discussion. This is a critical topic! We are "spinning out of control" in personal, professional, and political spending; thus, creating debt like we have never seen in the history of the world. Americaâ€™s national debt grew 40%, from 1990 through the Bush administration. With the new Obama policies, it is projected to increase 180.6% by 2035. This means every American will need to be taxed a minimum of 50% of every dollar earned in order to pay this debt. By all given signs, America will NEVER be able to be debt free. If there is ever a global leader who calls in national debts, America will the first name
called. What will happen to “in debt” nations? If we believe what the Bible says, the one who is in debt will become enslaved to the master financier. America and her church attendees are in deep trouble. "But that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii; and he seized him and began to choke him, saying, 'Pay back what you owe’ " (Matt. 18:28). "Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law" (Rom. 13:8).
CHAPTER 2 NEBUCHADNEZZAR’S PLAN OF ECONOMY
"The king reflected and said, 'Is this not Babylon the great, which I myself have built as a royal residence by the might of my power and for the glory of my majesty?' ” (Dan. 4:30). These were the words of the "great Nebuchadnezzar" - the man who had much pride and bondage when it came to the building of the "great Babylon." If you have been doing any reading in the book of Revelation, you will discover that Babylon will show its face one more time. This city has always been a thorn in God's side. It has and will again pride itself in wisdom, wealth, and power. In the case of King Nebuchadnezzar, he was turned over to a depraved mind for making such arrogant claims. "Immediately the word concerning Nebuchadnezzar was fulfilled; and he was driven away from mankind and began eating grass like cattle, and his body was drenched with the dew of heaven until his hair had grown like eagles' feathers and his nails like birds' claws” (Dan. 4:33). Why is God so offended by man or the Antichrist being so attached to wealth or external things? The answer is really too simple for the average mind to embrace. God knows that all who put their focus on wealth tend to forget Him. The other critical factor is people with wealth or excessive material things tend to think that it was by their hand. This ultimately provokes God to jealousy (Deut. 8:11, 17-18). What means did God use to break Nebuchadnezzar of his pride? It would behoove all of us to review CHAPTER four of Daniel. But the simple overview is this: God took all the externals away from the king until he was able to give God all of the honor, glory, and credit for the existence of wealth. That took seven years!! Yes, seven years of eating and looking like a beast. Even though there are many parallels here regarding the Great Tribulation of the Antichrist, God is making a clean and clear statement about man, money, and how he stewards it.
Thankfully, in Nebuchadnezzar's case, he repented and put his focus on the Creator - not all do that after such humbling. In fact, "Neb" himself lost his focus again. Wealth and possessions are seductive in nature, unless they are yielded to God.
As with "Neb," God has three primary
requirements when it comes to money: GIVING: Being free from the bondage of the love of money begins with following the guidelines God laid out for us for biblical giving. When we give, it brings God into our finances in a personal way. It also provokes God to give more to the giver. “ ‘Give, and it shall be given unto you’ ” (Luke 6:38, KJV). Our new habit of giving must start with what the Bible calls our tithes and offerings of God. I will speak more about the difference between the two later, but for now; tithe is the highly requested 10% and offering is the above and beyond. Giving is the Christian’s way of investing in heaven, kind of like heavenly stock, where “ ‘…thieves do not break in or steal’ ” (Matt. 6:20). Giving also proves where our hearts are. So many claim they love Jesus; but until a person looks at his check stubs, it cannot be proven (Matt. 6:21). RECEIVING: If we’re good givers, then we are awesome receivers. Once God sees that He has a giver on His hands, He opens the doors of heaven to directly and indirectly bless him. He knows the more He gives this type of giver, the more he will give away. And the more given, the more needs are fulfilled by God. In order to be one of God's receivers, we have to be in tune with God Himself. Personally, I believe God is intimately close to givers and receivers. He knows where His messengers of answered prayers are available. Keep in mind that the measurement we give is most likely the measurement we will receive (2 Cor. 9:6). ACCOUNTING: It is one thing to be a giver and receiver, but it is an entirely different thing to be a manager or an accountant (one who keeps adequate
out). Everything we eat, spend, save, or invest is to be held in account to God for how we use each and every penny we have. Many do not even realize that the Word is clear as to what we should spend His money on. I will reveal these areas later; but for now, know that He is detailed. God told us in His Word to flee from those who would waste our time and take
our money. He instructs us to use great care and prayer in what we purchase. Why? It is His time and money we are stewarding. As we wisely steward small things, He will entrust more, or the greater, to us later (Luke 16:10). Being freed from the “Nebuchadnezzar plan of economy” is realizing true wealth and prosperity come only from God. He is the One who chooses the measurement of wisdom, wealth, and health. If we think that we can get rich quick by our own education, investments, or practices, we will become the victims of our own schemes. God will soon bring a lesson upon us much like that of "Neb." It may not be as extreme as with Job or King Neb, but that will be God's choosing (Deut. 8:18). Freedom comes when we are committed to God's Divine purpose of money.
The purpose of money is not to bring us security and
protection. These are reasons that many use, but these reasons don't have caps or ceilings to them. The purpose of money, for most, is to breed independence - not having to lean on our fellow brothers and sisters for aid. Money is for full dependence on God. It demonstrates God's love and power over us. When we have money, we become stewards. When we become stewards, we have to depend on the One who is going to tell us how to steward it (Matt. 6:30). That's it! We will know we are free when we can recognize false worldly financial concepts.
servant. Remember: “For he who was called in the Lord while a slave, is the Lord's freedman; likewise he who was called while free, is Christ's slave” (1 Cor. 7:22). One of the toughest elements of being a freedman is embracing God's discipline. All of those times we sin by not bringing application to God's mandates, God allows riches with sorrow. He even allows the success to devour our investments. Many times we go on a lifetime search for this wealth and never find it (Hag. 1:9). We turn into a bitter old person, asking the same old question: “Why me?” God loves His children and a father
who loves his children will discipline them. Many times, God's discipline is in hiding the prosperity of our dreams. Being financially free is by the willpower to serve God rather than money. What we serve proves the location of our love. This is why God said, “For the love of money is the root of all sorts of evil” (1 Tim. 6:10, KJV). Notice it is not the money that is evil, but the love of money. God rarely makes a big deal about the money in the world, but rather the love of such things. This is what provokes God to being jealous (James 4). In the end-times, Satan wants people to serve him through their love for power, money, and success. Not to insult your intelligence here, but HIS PLAN WORKS. Without question, this is one of the reasons why God sends His Son for a Second Coming. Did you know that being out of debt is a biblical requirement? It is! God asks us not to be in debt to any man or institution. Most debt is the result of our disregarding God's eternal guidelines and not being willing to wait on Him for His supernatural provisions. I know the violation of this Truth quite well. I grew up an impatient child who got tired of waiting on anyone, let alone God. I understand the struggle to stay out of debt at all costs.
The person or institution we are indebted TO becomes our
master. In the end-times, if we are in debt to man or his human institutions, we will be forced to pay the piper (Satan) in one facet or another. This is the connection with money and the end-times that many believers do NOT want to look at. I have even known some "Christians" to go into deeper debt because the "Antichrist" is right around the corner. Do what is moral, legal, and of God, to get OUT OF DEBT (2 Kings 4:7). Another principle I learned about being free financially is learning how to embrace
abundance. Learning to accept abundance is kind of a joke to me. I know there are some who find it difficult to have money and material gain, but not this boy.
I find the loving embrace of abundance fun and
enjoyable. Now, learning how to embrace the suffering of poverty? No, that is not an easy embrace for me. When God decides to abase me, I starting thinking thoughts like: “God is angry at me,” “I am not as good as other
Christians,” or “There is
somewhere.â€? This is one of the toughest messages of Truth for me to hear, even though I know it is required of me to do so (Phil. 4:12).
CHAPTER 3 BIBLICAL POINTS OF FINANCIAL FREEDOM
The impulse to buy is something most people struggle with, but few realize the bondage that accompanies these impulses. The marketplace provides many opportunities to trap us into becoming undisciplined in our shopping habits. We want, we see, and we buy. Many times it can be as "candy coated" as the purchase of candy itself. God wants us to have the discernment of the Holy Spirit in all of our purchases. The problem is as old as the garden itself. One example is when Eve purchased fruit with the price of her soul. We must reject all that appeals to the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of our lives (1 John 2:16). SWINDLERS: The first and foremost problem that needs to be addressed is that of recognizing and rejecting the swindler himself, Satan. No being knows the marketplace better than our enemy.
He is a shrewd
businessman who uses earthly swindlers to place people in bondage; primarily, those who make claims to be in the kingdom of God. A swindler, as depicted in man's reality, gives very few evidences of his deception. A con artist is usually friendly, personable, and enthusiastic about his product or in how we can make large sums of money by "buying into" his product. His, or her, technique is to get us to focus on the business aspects, or profits, of our demise. But, God wants us to focus on the warning signs of deception. If we do this, He will find a way to reveal the way of deliverance from such tricks of the trade. â€œTo deliver you from the way of evil, from the man who speaks perverse thingsâ€? (Prov. 2:12). God will deliver us, but we must know the ways of a swindler. History has proven that women tend to struggle with impulse buying over that of men. I am not convinced this is the case in God's reality. Men tend to purchase BIGGER toys that cost more; whereas, women do tend to make smaller purchases more frequently. What is true, about both male and
female, is statistics prove that female salespersons are more difficult to turn down - at least for men. This problem roots itself as far back as the Garden of Eden. Why did man say, “yes” to the dress? Well, that is the million dollar question isn't it? Because of Adam defaulting to Eve in the garden, men have had a generational problem of saying NO to women. Through the years, many men have told me that if the little woman is happy, I am happy. The price tag of Adamic default is enslavement.
disciplined by God because of this single factor of disobedience. “Then to Adam He said, ‘Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, “You shall not eat from it”; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you will eat of it All the days of your life’ ” (Gen. 3:17). I am by no means putting the blame on the woman - on the contrary. In fact, I am putting full responsibility on the man. God disciplined Adam because he listened to the voice of his wife. The weaknesses that Adam and Eve suffered while in the garden are the same weaknesses men and women struggle with today. Satan is still appealing (tempting) through the woman to appeal to the default of man - giving into the voice of his woman instead of listening to God. That puts the responsibility on the man
household. Women are to spend freely within those boundaries. It is an issue of patriarchy, leadership, and roles defined by the Holy Scriptures. I have counseled hundreds of men through the years. I have found that most men buy their BIG toys because their wives spend on impulse. It is almost like he uses her shoe shopping as an excuse to buy his boat. Therefore, he continues to allow her cycle of small purchases to justify putting his family in debt; thinking that she will then be silent when it comes to his impulse purchases. This is not godly logic or reason. I know that we can't pigeonhole every family into this formula, but overall, I personally believe it is a primary tactic Satan uses to place the whole family into self-justified debt. BEST BUY: A significant part of financial freedom is getting the best buy; but getting the best buy is not always justifiable to God. Getting a godly
good buy requires taking the time and effort to do research. That means walking away from purchases that do not measure up to the predetermined standards of God. It means knowing exactly what we want and seeing if it meets the checklist of how to spend God's funds. “God buys” are a result of a disciplined life of knowing God and His guidelines of spending. RECORD KEEPING: God is an accountant! If He records every word that proceeds out of the mouth of man, surely He is recording how we are spending, or stewarding, His resources. If we are to prosper under the guidelines of heaven, we must be wise in our planning, be diligent in working towards the purchase, and be accurately recording the expenditures of God's bank account. If the Master, God, would require an account of His resources, we will be ready to present an accurate account of how we spent our Master's investment. LENDING: Another downfall of many men is lending with interest and cosigning on loans of family and friends. If borrowing money makes us a servant to the lender, then lending money to a family member, or friend, forces that one to become our servant. Since we know the Word of God is True, we need to be very careful about making slaves out of our familiar loved ones. When we "loan" - we need to loan under the guideline of not expecting it back. If our new servant pays us back, we are blessed. If he doesn’t, in our eyes and in the eyes of God, we are still free. Loaning money for profit is NOT a biblical principle. Our world hinges on this lie and it IS what makes the world turn, at least financially. It is also the technique the Antichrist will use to prosper the world's economy and place the people in a slave position to him. He will be the banker in the up-andcoming global banking system. God expects us to give to those who are in need. Cosigning and loaning with interest means bondage to the one for whom we signed, and also potential bondage to the lender (Prov. 31:10). DOMESTIC: Those who discover God's miraculous plan of economy prepare their homes for education, medical recovery, care for elderly family members, housing, food, and clothing. The patriarch of the family will spiritually train up his children and grandchildren to be the providers for their own homes, without going into debt to do it. This will certainly
require the leader of the home to become educated on the guidelines of spending, according to the Word of God. GOOD NAME: One of the most difficult principles of financial freedom is choosing a good name, rather than great riches. Scriptures show us that broken commitments, secret sins, not taking care of widows, dishonoring parents, and taking revenge are just a few of the sins that get in the way of God caring for His children. If a person of pride thinks he can care for his family without the Hand of God, He most likely will allow the downfall of such thinking. God would prefer for us to put our emphasis on being of good reputation or having a good name - one that the generations who follow us can inherit (Mal. 3:10). PRAYER: A principle that continues to be a struggle for me in financial freedom is in knowing how to receive resources from God through prayer. God is pleased when His children call on Him for help. Like most humans, when wealth increases or even stabilizes, it becomes easy to cease depending on God. This proves our independence and reason for wanting the wealth to start with. The answer is a dependent prayer life with our Lord. Pray about everything, and I mean everything - a habit that challenges me to this very hour (Eph. 3:20). PARTNERSHIPS: A temptation many men struggle with is becoming a partner in ventures to gain prosperity. The reason why this is not biblical is because it places both parties in enslavement to each other. When one falls, they both fall. It is deceptive thinking that the end justifies the means. Even though the technique works well in the lives of the wealthy, the average business and family usually end up in bankruptcy over such unbiblical practices. It would behoove us to review Daniel 1:8. LAZINESS: There is no other way to label those who invest in get rich quick schemes. Attempting to live and prosper without working for it is viewed by God as a slothful workman. He placed the discipline on man to work by the sweat of his brow (Gen. 3:17-19) and this is what He expects from the man. Unless it is an inheritance or gift, anything short of this is strongly classified by God as irresponsible living. Over the years of being in ministry, I have had countless offers to join multilevel marketing firms, and in every case, God has led me back to Luke 12:19.
LISTENING TO OUR WIVES: For many of us who are married, listening to our wives (not obeying) can be one of our greatest challenges. Many domestic financial disasters are a result of not paying close attention to our wives’ female instincts. Our wives function much like the Holy Spirit; they have an uncanny ability to discern what is not wise for the family's welfare. She is our "one flesh" and we, as men, cannot function without our helpmate, unless we are in full dependence on God. God gave her to us to complete us - even in our financial decisions. INHERITANCE: True financial freedom comes to a household when the patriarch knows how to pass on a spiritual, relational, and financial heritage. God gave us the principle of inheritance in order to pass on the Truths of His kingdom into all areas entrusted to man. From what we can discover in the Word, His purpose of inheritance is to strengthen family life and multiply the investments made by the previous generation. These are God's vital signs for the family: spiritual education, more children, health care, provisions, caring for the elderly, family businesses, and having a good name. Proverbs 13:22 states “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children's children.” Also, in Proverbs 20:21, “An inheritance gained hurriedly at the beginning will not be blessed in the end.” For many of us, we may not be able to leave a boatload of cash, but we can teach our children's children how to manage the inheritance of God's resources - whatever that might entail.
CHAPTER 4 SEVEN PRINCIPLES OF FINANCIAL FREEDOM
God has established financial principles for us that are not optional. These are requirements, if we want to live according to the Divine Word of Truth. If we choose NOT to live by these simple principles, we will view money as a personal possession that can be obtained by our own resources. The result is a self-reliant life. This gains the attention of a God who cares enough to put us in our place. If we view these seven principles as mandates, we will find long-term freedom in our personal, professional, and spiritual lives. SPIRITUAL ACCEPTANCE: A man or woman who does not accept his position of being a child of the King, or rejects the ways of God, will suffer with overwhelming feelings of inferiority or self-rejection. The negative results of not accepting our position in Christ will often, if not always, manifest itself in self-indulgent spending, or attempting to buy things in order to make ourselves feel better about our "self-image." This is the most common form of spending. This can show its ugly head through the purchases of boats, cars, clothes, houses, or by merely "bargain buying." Knowing who we are in Christ, our identity, is critical in being a godly steward of the King's resources. EMBRACING AUTHORITY: It is impossible for a man to steward God's resources, if he does not place himself under God's authority. This is practically done through submitting ourselves to a mentor whom God has entrusted to oversee our life, as well as, to the written Word itself. This is why He gives us spiritual fathers/leaders. People make independent decisions with their finances because they ARE independent. Most of the people in our postmodern world are not quick to place themselves under God given authority. Authority has become a "nasty" word in our society. Followers tend to only submit themselves to "authority figures" who have proven themselves to be wise. That is not the original mandate
given to us by God. Authority is authority. If the authority asks us to do something immoral, ungodly, or illegal, we are to say NO to that particular request. If the authority is asking us to do things that are within the boundaries of the Word of God, we are to wholeheartedly say, “YES” and go do it quickly. This is a practice lost within the pages of biblical living. The only way to break a man of independence is through dependence. “Servants, be submissive to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and gentle, but also to those who are unreasonable” (1 Peter 2:18). A CLEAR CONSCIENCE: People who suffer with a foggy conscience will lower the standards of God to fix their morbid beliefs. Once this occurs, a lifestyle of compromise will fill that follower’s heart and mind with worldly fables. He can then only trust in his own judgment in how to spend God's resources. The guilt experienced by a believer like this will spur him on to spending even more on fruitless possessions. First Timothy 1:19 says: “Keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith.” A man or woman, who does NOT have a clear conscience, will end up with a shipwreck of a life. FORGIVING: The terms forgiveness, reconciliation, and restoration are biblical words to define a balanced Christian life. They are also financial terms used in the Word. To accurately handle ourselves with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, we must accurately handle our resources from God in like manner. If we are quick to forgive an individual for hurting us, we will be just as quick to forgive his debt against us. God graced us - we grace them. If we do not forgive others for the pain that has been trusteed upon us, we certainly will not be quick to forgive them of what they "owe" us. Financial freedom equals spiritual freedom. It is that simple. God has also called us to the ministry of reconciliation. This not only means going to our brother to reconcile hurt and blame, but it also includes our finances. To truly reconcile with someone, we must count the cost of loss. We are required by God to let go of any harbored feelings or debt we hold on him. Restoration is restoring the relationship by whatever means God requires of us. Many times, this means releasing someone of the debt
against us. The terms of the Gospel are the same terms used in financial freedom (Heb. 12:15-17). I HAVE NO RIGHTS: Only the meek inherit the earth. A meek person is one who has yielded his rights to demand what is right. He quietly waits for the Hand of God to demand His rights. Meek people diligently work to wait for the right time to proclaim the Words of God - not demand it!
payment. They usually â€œwant a pound of fleshâ€? as they say. Proud people (not meek) enjoy watching people squirm their way into humility. Most lenders find more gratification in the enslavement they create, than they do in being paid in full. This is a technique the Antichrist will use in the final days. Debt equals bondage and bondage requires service. MORALITY: Anyone who violates God's principles of morality, sooner or later, becomes a slave to immorality. I believe the primary reason for all the immorality in the world today is because people refuse to respect, and obey, the laws of God's morality.
Being moral is not a sexual
concept. Being moral is accepting the purity of the guidelines of a moral and just God. As long as the people of this world violate God's principles of finances, there will be immorality. You can count on it. CALLING: People wander because they have no purpose and people without a purpose have not embraced their calling. When a man or woman of God commits himself to God's holy and righteous purpose for being on this earth, he will properly steward the resources of God. This can only happen when you and I seek first God's kingdom and His righteousness. Once we do this, He will add all these things in and unto our lives (Matt. 6:33). These are the seven principles of financial freedom. I am not one for making promises UNLESS the promises are backed by our Living God. This I do promise: if we adhere to these seven principles, we WILL be financially free.
CHAPTER 5 PROOF OF FINANCIAL BONDAGE
It is easy to see if someone is in financial bondage. One’s life becomes an outward view of an inward problem; a person radiates the reflections of a rebellious life. These people, me included, are lukewarm at heart and filled with bitterness and resentment. When we encounter a bitter person, in most cases, we are seeing a person who is in debt spiritually, relationally, and oftentimes, financially. As a counselor, or discipler of people, I hunt for nine primary symptoms of bondage. INSECURITY: People who are not secure in who they are in Christ are typically building their identity around another person – usually someone who has more than they do. Their minds are fragile. They are easily offended and quick to defend their position of bondage. They fight being confronted with the pride of self, which is not only annoying to the observer, but to God Himself. They are a people who are difficult to counsel, due to their unwillingness to be told what to do. These people are so focused on being like another, that they defend the humanness of their graven image, rather that embracing the image of God. Insecure people are defenders of self and rebels of wisdom. They find great comfort in hiding behind the mask they wear. To put it simply; they are living out the lives of someone who is more prosperous. These people parrot the lives of those they admire. They DO NOT know who they are. FILLED WITH FEAR:
Individuals of fear are so aware of their
environment that they work to block out the things that upset their existence and reason for living. They tend to make decisions based on the externals of life, including finances. Fearful people surround themselves with comfort foods, material possessions, and relationships that won’t upset them. They seek to have a quiet life, but rarely find it. When they obtain the results of their fear, they become fearful all the more. First John tells us that fear involves punishment. These people are quick to punish themselves with their own fears and are equally quick to punish others
who move or change things around in their environment. Fear is NEVER satisfied! It has no boundaries and finds no rest – no matter how hard one tries. The only solution to fear is love. God’s perfect love chases fear out of a person’s life. Usually their fear has a price tag connected to it. This price tag is in spending money on things that subdue their fears: drugs, food, clothing, etc. ANXIETY: Anxiety is the emotion of unpredictability. Those who suffer with this are always concerned about the details around them, almost like they are infringing upon the sovereignty of God. They think that if the circumstances were different – they would be different. As you might know, it doesn’t work. It only complicates their lives and brings on more feelings of anxiety. These people are difficult to deal with, let alone live with. If you are one of these anxious people, you even find it difficult to live with yourself. People of anxiety do not trust - not in themselves, nor others.
They tend to be “controlling” and act out of control.
methods are madness and they tend to live in a constant state of anger. Financially, they spend to feel good – many times referred to as shopaholics. Even though this is not always true, the tendency is there. INSOMNIA: God said NOT to let the sun go down on our wrath/worries (Eph. 4:26). Worries are always worst when we lie down to sleep. The sounds of distractions are minimal, the tugs from the needy are in waiting, and the environment becomes conducive for the enemy’s favorite place – darkness. Having debt when we lie down to sleep is like going to bed without forgiving someone. It will cause tossing and turning the whole night through. When I read this verse, I oftentimes hear these words in my head: Stephen, do not let the sun go down on debt - spiritually, psychologically, or financially. A LACK OF THANKSGIVING: OK, maybe you are in debt! Are you thankful for it? I am not saying we should be thankful for going INTO debt, but rather being thankful for the opportunity for God to teach us through the debt.
When, and only when, we are thankful for the
circumstances God has allowed in our lives, will He deliver us from them one decision at a time. Thankless hearts are greedy hearts. Plus, a thankless person spends his/her days worrying and complaining about the
consequences of their own fruitless decisions of getting into debt to start with. ENSLAVED TO THE ANTICHRIST: People, who are in debt, are led around by a ring in their noses – the ring being their debt and the one leading them around being the lender. Debt works like this. If I loan you something that belongs to me, that something binds us together by way of a “ring-in-nose” relationship. By you accepting this “loan,” you give me permission to intrude into your life. What you are claiming as your own isn’t really yours – it’s mine. I just let you say it is yours to make you feel comfortable with being my slave. I’m just giving you permission to hold what is mine, until the terms of agreement have been completed. A good example of this is “would-be homeowners.” Almost every “homeowner” that I know talks about “their house” like it is their house, when we both know that in the ugly world of debt, it belongs to the bank. Even if we are one of the 0.08 % that has paid off the house in full, the ground under our feet doesn’t belong to us. Most do not know, nor do they care to know, the truth about true home ownership. The ownership package only includes the first six inches of soil under the house. I had a client, a few years ago, come to me so angry he was “fit to be tied.” The government was forcing him to sell his house that he had worked his entire life to “pay in full.” Not only that, they were offering him a ridiculously low price.
I had the
unpleasant responsibility of telling him that by way of federal mandate, he only owns the first six inches of soil on his land and that if he didn’t move his house, or sell it, he would lose his complete investment. I further explained that the federal government requires all states to reinforce this federal mandate just in case the government needs that land, i.e. in his case, a freeway. In reality, the individual states or the federal government can take possession of every inch of land bordered out as the United States of America, IF, they deem it necessary to do so. What if the federal government itself was in so much debt that it, too, could not pay its lenders? What becomes, or is, the collateral? I can assure you it is NOT the Monopoly money being printed by the US Mint or the gold hidden in the closets of our US Treasury. It is none other than the land under our feet. I really hope you see the covert scheming that has been going on by the primary enemy of God. Have we become so deluded as to
think Satan was sleeping when the laws of the lands were established? Most assuredly not; it was while we were sleeping that these laws were established!
He has been proactive in every form of government:
worldwide, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, without one blink of sleep or slumber. He knows that sheep cannot be led to a slaughter without “cattle rails” – policies and laws. Since over 90% of our world’s countries have adopted this type of land law, I personally believe the Antichrist will gain ownership of the planet by way of these established laws.
historian worth their salt knows what I just said is true. Why? History proves itself over and over again. Policy proves ownership and ownership grants permission. So many Americans are concerned about being enslaved to “BIG Government,” but I say that our very own government better examine the ring in its own nose. If indeed our government has a ring (debt) in their own nose, a couple of questions are begging to be asked: What master is leading the American people and where is he taking us? Does the global climate policy of land ownership bother you? Consider this: God is the originator of this mandate. Satan is just doing his normal thing and replicating what God does. You see, this way, it is guaranteed to work. Satan wants debt: individually, nationally, and globally. Without debt, he cannot rule! There is nothing we own that cannot be taken from us – nothing. Even if we did find something completely free of debt, God could take it away in a heartbeat. After all, He is the owner of ALL – and that ALL includes us, our banks, and even Satan. JEALOUSY:
Individuals who suffer with debt are typically a jealous
people. Jealousy, according to the Greek, is “the passion of ownership of; or possessing an exclusive right over a person, place, or thing.” God is the only being that has this exclusive right over people, land, and their possessions.
When humans attempt to use the verbiage of rights of
ownership, they provoke God Himself to be a jealous God (Ex. 20:5). Usually when I bring up this topic around lukewarm “Christians,” I’m accused of the sin of semantics. From what I read in the Holy Scriptures, provoking God to jealousy by making claims of ownership is a big deal. In
fact, one of the Hebrew names of God is Kannaw – “Jealous One.” So, I just tell them to go ahead and take ownership of some person, land, or possession; while we all watch to see if the God of the universe manifests the mandate of His name – the Jealous One. Do people not see that well over 50% of our market purchases are based on jealousy? This principle is SO true that the manufactures design their products to be insured/guaranteed for about one year.
mentality is based on the lies associated with jealousy.
guarantees on products for more than a year when statistics prove that the consumer replaces the product within the first year of “owning” it? Manufactures are not necessarily making products of lesser quality because they want to “cut corners.” It is usually based on the principle of marketplace jealousy. ARROGANCE: Why would indebted people be arrogant, when they have nothing to claim as their own? James 3:14 says, “But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth.”
According to these truths, when individuals are
suffering with jealousy and selfish ambition, they are arrogant and actually lie against the Truth. Arrogance is the main characteristic of a liar and a thief. This is why arrogant people love the gamble of debt – they “borrow” from Peter to pay Paul.
They typically purchase things to give the
appearance of being wealthy and secure, even if it takes getting a loan to do it. In God’s reality, they are only one lawsuit away from poverty. Do you know the percentage of loans granted today that are for the purpose of paying debt? Yes, you read me correctly; more debt, usually with a higher interest rate, to pay for delinquent debt. I don’t know the percentage, but I can assure you, it is the biggest chunk of national debt represented in the private and government sectors.
I have asked two
separate global economists how I can get my hands on “pie charts” from the international banks stating such statistics. In both cases, they said that these numbers are “privatized.” For those of you new to this term, that means the International Banking System is owned by the private sector (nongovernment) and thus, any governmental loans released through their bank becomes privatized – individually owned. Who are these private
sector people and why do they call the shots on the value of the coin? I’ll tell you why; the lender calls the shots. Secondly, almost every country in the world is in debt to the International Banking System. If the IBS ever calls in their loans, there will be a bunch of nations having the carpet (land) pulled out from underneath their feet. If you’re like me, you will find a lot of this global finance stuff a bit hard to believe. My observation is that history tends to repeat itself and that there is nothing really new under the sun. I am not speaking so much as a prophet, but more as a historian. If history does indeed repeat itself, the global climate is about to change. BITTERNESS AND RESENTMENT: These two words do an adequate job of describing someone who loves money more than they love God. Why? Those who love money are playing with the root of all evil. Those who play with evil are challenging God to remove the very possessions that form idolatry. Once they catch on to the fact that God is removing these objects, they become resentful and bitter. If you would take the time to read through the book of Revelation, you will discover an unstoppable mission of God to remove all the earthly things from the people, obedient and disobedient alike. He does this in order to observe where the people place their glory.
A reasonable mind would think disobedient people
would get the message and repent; but they don’t. They actually become more resentful and bitter – which is something the love of money has the ability to do. DISILLUSIONMENT: When indebted people attempt to use money to fill their unhappiness or obtain that possession, they quickly discover their purchase didn’t make them feel any better. Not only that, they soon realize the additional debt has only added to their feelings of disillusionment and despair.
CHAPTER 6 PURPOSE OF MONEY & POSSESSIONS
Have you ever worked diligently to get out of debt, just to find yourself back in debt several years later? I have - three times. Debt mentality is a dangerous place to live. God said that the natural mind cannot understand the things of God. In fact, He goes on to say that the things of God are foolish to Him. Any mind that is not reconciled unto God, either through Salvation and/or by way of walking after the Spirit, is a mind that is in debt. The way that a man manages his finances is a direct reflection of his relationship with God – or lack of it. “But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised” (1 Cor. 2:14). THE NATURAL MIND: The tragedy of a man with a natural mind is he will NEVER be able to understand the wisdom of God. It will be easy for him to get into debt and stay there his entire life. He will resort to his own understanding and experiences to live from one master (financer) to another – constantly borrowing from Peter to pay Paul. The man with a natural mind is unsaved and has never asked Jesus Christ to come and live within his mortal being. His mind is easily seduced by earthly, natural, and demonic ideas. “But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth. This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, and demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing” (James 3:14-16). The sobering reality is that the natural man cannot understand God’s purposes of spending money. Honestly, he won’t even really care. If it doesn’t make sense to him, why would he want to live it out? So if you are an unsaved reader, good luck; because luck is all that you have going for you. If you pray that the Spirit grants you understanding, you might just
be asking for Salvation. In that case, you might want to consider reading the prayer in the Appendix at the back of this book. SPIRITUAL MAN: This is a person who has asked Jesus Christ to come into his mortal body through Salvation. Christ lives in him and he lives in Christ.
Because of this truth, the indwelt Spirit gives guidance and
understanding to the Word of God.
If a person does not have the
indwelling Spirit living and breathing IN him, he has zero capacity to understand any of the elements of God (1 Cor. 2:14-15). Not one jot or tittle.
The spiritual man can hear words of wisdom and become
overwhelmed with a peace that God is speaking to him through the words, printed or spoken. This is because outwardly spoken words become a witness to inwardly spoken words through the enabled power of the Holy Spirit.
This is one of the GREATEST blessings an indwelt Christian
possesses, once saved! This all reminds me of the story of Elijah and the brook. Elijah was asked; OK, commanded by the Lord to flee to a brook in the wilderness. At first this sounded a bit strange to me, but as I read on, I soon realized that God was about to show him the most powerful principle of heaven – God is in charge. He obeyed God, and as a result, he was protected from the wrath of that horrid Queen Jezebel. God then miraculously fed Elijah by ravens every morning and evening (1 Kings 17:1-6). If it wasn’t for Elijah knowing the difference between hearing the voice of God versus his own, God only knows what would have happened. It was during those months that God not only saved his life from the wicked queen, but He freed him from severe despair – or as the world calls it, depression. Through this provisionary time, God delivered rest for his body and MIND.
God lavished him with intimate fellowship and he
experienced daily proof that God was his provider. God revealed His miraculous plan of economy right in front of Elijah’s eyes. By the way, this was during a time when there was severe feminine in all the land. Sooner or later, the brook dried up.
Although God could have
miraculously kept the water flowing, He used this apparent “lack of provision” to move Elijah from this comfortable place to the widow
Zarephath. Again, as expected, Elijah obeyed God. Later, he understood God’s purpose for such a move. I don’t know if you remember the story, but the widow Zarephath had only enough food for one more meal. God directed Elijah to instruct her to make a meal for him first. When I first read this story, I really thought Elijah was being quite selfish. But later, I saw the reality of what God was doing.
The widow obeyed, and because she did, God miraculously
multiplied her food. In fact, God’s blessing and provision lasted for over a year, until the famine was over.
Again, her ability to hear and obey
allowed her to embrace and understand one of the most important financial principles: When we give our first fruit to God, He causes the remainder of our assets to meet our needs – even if it takes supernatural multiplication to do it.
CHAPTER 7 PURPOSE OF MONEY
Financial bondage is an immediate consequence of NOT understanding the rhyme and reason for God’s purpose of money.
Contrary to most
opinions, the purpose of money is not to provide security, build independence, or to create power and influence in the community. God’s purposes are much more basic. FIRST PURPOSE OF MONEY: BASIC NEEDS It really doesn’t take much to sustain human life: food, clothing, and shelter. The odd thing is that in a world filled with wealth and prosperity, these are the three greatest needs found in almost every country in the world. Did you know that one in seven people in the United States live below the poverty level? In a world of 2.1 billion people, almost half the world’s population is living on less than $2 a day, each barely staying alive. That is unbelievably disturbing, but very telling. Since this is the case, where is all the money going? Believe it or not, the money is being stored up for the Antichrist. Those in world power, like the G-20 World Council, actually work to keep the majority of the world’s population below the poverty line. It is a political maneuver that has been used since the days of the first kings. The grave appearance being offered by the Global Finance Commission is that of a growing economy and prosperity; when in reality, poverty is actually getting worse. The United States is at the top of the pile when it comes to the “appearance of wealth.” But in reality, 88% of Americans are one paycheck away from living on the street. Why? - because of debt. Debt makes a person look and feel like he is living above the poverty, but the truth is – most of the 88% are enslaved to the 12%! Hebrew culture shows us that the one who provides is the master. This is a simple principle God gave His people to live by, since the beginning of
man’s time. God demonstrates His loving care by setting Himself up as the provider of all the resources needed by man to live. Jesus said: " ‘Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith!’ ” (Matt. 6:26-30). Paul imparted these words of counsel to pass on to the churches through Timothy: “If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content” (1Tim. 6:8).
PRINCIPLE ONE ESTABLISH DEPENDENCE: God is quick to reveal His mandate that man must depend on Him for all things. Since the beginning of man, mankind has worked to become independent of God. Because man was born independent of God, this has become man’s greatest weakness – a desire to be self-sufficient. Because of sin, man has an innate passion to be his own boss. From this self-justified position, man tends to use God like He is some kind of a slot machine, by praying for prosperity and wealth. However, God doesn’t respond to such prayers. Instead, He told us to pray, “ ‘Give us this day our daily bread’ ” (Matt. 6:11). He is the only One who really knows that daily needs produce daily dependence.
PRINCIPLE TWO LOVE LIFE:
When God’s children fail to embrace their need for a
Provider, they lose their love for the One who provides for them. God created us to depend on Him for all of our needs and that comes through an overwhelming desire to need Him. There is only one way we can be complete. It is in Christ - apart from Him, we can do nothing.
“And in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority” (Col. 2:10). Christ is head over all rulers and all authority. This includes all the global leaders who think they have ownership of the world’s economy. When the Israelites were in the wilderness, God taught them to look to Him for daily food, shelter, and even the sandals for their feet. He orchestrated this dependence by drying up any and all avenues of self-provision. There was no food or water to be found, no matter how hard their self-sufficient efforts tried. This practice is one that God makes use of to this very day. Every man, rich or poor, is commanded to depend on God as his Father– Provider. If we study the Scriptures, we will find God using famines throughout the Word to help His people get refocused on Him.
PRINCIPLE THREE DEVELOP GRATITUDE: Being thankful in all things is probably the most challenging mandate God has given His people. Having a thankful heart for the basics is a blessed by-product of contentment in Christ. However, we all begin to lose our “rest in Christ” when we compare what we have with that of others, particularly those of the unsaved world.
expectations dominate our minds’ focus. If we expect from man, we will most likely apply pressure on man to provide for our needs. If we expect from God, we ultimately will place our focus on our relationship with God. We are created to love the one who provides for us. If it is man, we will tend to love man more than God. If it is God, we will certainly love God more than man.
PRINCIPLE FOUR LIVING WITHIN OUR MEANS: Contentment only comes by living within the boundaries of a God-ordained budget. Being content in Christ, and His fulfilling of our basic needs, helps us resist the ongoing onslaught of temptations that we are not truly content unless we buy some new “thing.” God’s reality is - a contented child of God feels wealthy because he knows he already possesses more than he needs for daily living.
“But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment”
(1 Tim. 6:6).
PRINCIPLE FIVE ENJOY WHAT WE HAVE: Always being in the “want” destroys our ability to truly enjoy the things that God has given us. This occurs when we are moved to focus on the things that we THINK GOD SHOULD give us, rather than on what we do have.
The Word of God calls this
covetousness. God wants us to enjoy the possessions He has allotted for us. He finds great delight in watching His children have fun, laugh, and make use of the things He gives us. These are the five principles of purpose number one (basic needs): dependence on God, having a deeper love life with Him, being grateful for what we have, living within our means, and enjoying what He has given to us. Be assured - when all five of these come into play, we will be well content with money being a provisionary factor of our basic needs.
CHAPTER 8 CONFIRMING DIRECTION
Throughout biblical history, God has used the lack of provisions (money) to guide and direct His people in His given pathway. There are times He uses the abundance of provision, or the lack of it, to confirm His direction for our lives. A classic example of this is the purchase of a car, but not having the funds saved to purchase it. For godly stewards, we can safely see that until God provides the funding, it is not His will for us to buy the car. For each of us who have fallen into the poor steward mentality: we see, we want, we pray, and we go into debt to get it.
SECOND PURPOSE OF MONEY CONFIRM DIRECTIONS: Let’s say that we do have the funds set aside to make the purchase. Is it God’s will for us to go ahead and buy? Not necessarily! God bases the “yes” on one simple factor - Is it a true and real need? This, too, can be subjective. We humans tend to rationalize our decisions based upon what WE think is a need, rather than what God calls a need. In order to discover that which God calls a real need, we must embrace all of the stewardship guidelines of the Word. An example is buying a used car instead of a new one. Buying a new car is not necessarily a sin; whereas, purchasing a good used car may be more in line with God’s rules of stewardship. One of the first symptoms of indulgent purchases I watch for in myself, as well as in others, is that of impatience. People who “buy on the spot” with large purchases tend to justify their indulgences. Those who carefully weigh the “pros and cons,” walk away, pray, and then decide, show due diligence unto the Lord. “Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him; do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes” (Psalm 37:7).
Let’s examine the five building blocks of this particular purpose of money.
PRINCIPLE ONE BUILDING FAITH: God has made a commitment to clothe the grasses of the field, which are alive today and tossed into a pile of rubble tomorrow. Will He not much more clothe you and me if we have increasing faith (Matt 6:30)? The Lord seems to move upon the lives of those who show or demonstrate faith. I really think many times God wonders where and what we are doing with our faith. He implores us to have faith in His name, which has more strength than that of any man. God is more interested in revealing Himself from faith to faith and thus, requiring of us to live by such faith. Faith is evidence of believing in unseen things – the things of God. God expects us to use our spiritual gifts according to the grace given to each of us and to exercise them according to His Divine will. Faith helps us to discern what God wants to accomplish in and through our pocketbooks. All of us should carefully weigh how each dollar is spent, according to how it ultimately benefits God’s glory and kingdom. Once God gives us clear direction on how we spend His money stewarded to us, we then can have confidence toward God in our daily walk with Him. When we patiently wait on the Lord for spending, and saving, we are given the privilege to see the bigger blessing He has for us. Most of us settle for “cheap” things because we are unwilling to wait on God to provide us with what He has stored up for us. An example is buying that car on credit when God may have a vehicle ready to be given to us. There are so many material possessions just lying around, waiting on God to move the heart of a giver to answer the prayers of one of His needy. But most simply do not have the faith to see the blessing arrive. Waiting develops and establishes faith.
PRINCIPLE TWO LORD OF LIFE: How often do you and I proclaim that Jesus is the Lord of Life, while we live like we are the lord of our own lives? Lordship is only confirmed when we are obedient to the moving of God’s hand and
respectfully honor the limitations that He places on our lives. A person who has plenty of money stored up will find it very difficult to see God’s guiding hand. This is not to say that all those who are blessed with large sums of money don’t hear God. But the norm is those of wealth tend NOT to seek the kingdom of God first, before they spend. Statistics prove, the more one has, the less one depends on God. Because of this, God gives significant warnings to the wealthy: “Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy” (1 Tim. 6:17).
PRINCIPLE THREE PROTECTION: Have you ever noticed that no matter how much God blesses us, we want more? I certainly do! As we look into biblical history, we see God providing many men with everything they need, plus some. In a few short CHAPTER s, they are crying out for more. This all started in the Garden when God gave Adam and Eve absolutely everything they needed to enjoy life. Satan came along and put the thought in both of their minds that they can have much more, in fact, that they could have as much as God. From that day forward, man’s sinful bent has pushed him to see, want, and get. I believe this was Satan’s method of madness to set the world up for debt mentality. The enemy is well aware of God’s principle of not being in debt to any man and that man becomes a slave to the one who holds his debt. Upon this principle, we have the financial system of the Antichrist. He also knows the wealthy fall into temptations and snares easier than the poor. “But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction” (1 Tim. 6:9). We find in God’s continuous history that He tends to use His people’s need for money to protect them from falling into the temptations and snares of Satan. We always need to remember that need creates dependence and dependence forms relationship.
PRINCIPLE FOUR BUILDING PATIENCE: Patience is not something we learn, practice, or memorize. Patience is a fruit resulting from a dependent lifestyle and appropriation of allowing Christ to live His life through us, as indwelt believers. Patience is evidence of a mature Christian, who is in the habit of depending on Christ “in them” to make the decision through them. We are told this fruit comes to maturity through tribulation (trials). “For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God” (1 Peter 2:20). Financial hardship, no matter what level of the economy we live in, tends to be viewed by each of us as suffering. Due to this weakness of man, God uses the lack of funding to produce a trial. Through this trial, God causes the fruit of patience to bloom.
PRINCIPLE FIVE TRUE RICHES: In God’s mind, there is a major difference between earthly riches and heavenly riches. Mankind gets caught up in the worries of the world and the deceitfulness of riches. Once this occurs, desires for other things enter in and begin to suffocate the Word in the believer. God works diligently to place the Word within the hearts of His children. Yet, there are some of us who allow these profound principles of God to be choked out by the worries of wanting more money and the pleasures of life. The end result is not fruit of the Spirit. Why would God entrust heavenly riches to someone who is unfaithful with the use of unrighteous wealth? He not only can’t, He won’t. God measures the amount of heavenly riches according to how the man is faithful with the earthly riches. He is known for starting out by placing small things in our hands, to see if we will be faithful in stewarding them according to His Word. If we are, He entrusts much to us. That is how it works. We cannot truly understand the riches of His glory unless we understand the importance of properly stewarding the things of the earth. God wants to impart to us the depth of His riches in sound wisdom and
knowledge of Him.
These are the things God finds admirable in His
children – not the amount of money we have stored away in our piggy banks. “But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ” (Phil. 3:7-8). In conclusion, we have learned that God is more interested in: our level of appropriated faith, who is “lord” of our lives, protecting us from the snares of the devil, developing the fruit of patience in us, and being able to trust His children with true riches.
It is through these elements we find
confirmation of God’s given direction in our lives.
CHAPTER 9 MULTIGENERATIONAL GIVING There is a plan of economy presented in the Bible that is not influenced by recessions, depressions, topless inflation, or the value of the global dollar. It is God’s financial plan and economy that is of utmost importance. It involves the control and management of all of the affairs of mankind, including man’s choices on how to spend his money. God’s plan of spending has very little to do with the benefits here on earth, but rather building up “eternal weight of glory” in His heavenly bank account. In the end, God’s plan actually reconciles with all of earth’s treasures, resources, capacities, as well as, man’s role in stewarding each. This must include the eternal purpose in the mind of God, as He created all. In other words, money should reflect the face of God. If it doesn’t, the earth and all that is in it, including mankind, become out of balance.
THIRD PURPOSE OF MONEY MULTIGENERATIONAL GIVING:
Man’s economic systems collapse
because he has been selfish in his spending and has failed to include in his “economic principles” those matters vital to the kingdom of God – the Four Purposes of Money. Man’s greatest error in handling money is that he has not reckoned with his responsibilities to the God of the universe, the One who made all resources. The other big mistake is that mankind does not reckon his responsibility to human kind – marriage, family, community, state, nation, and then, the world. Instead, he has trafficked his available resources to his immediate advantage and then has the gall to sign the name of Christ to his reasons of insanity. The result has been the destruction of resources necessary to the whole family of God. Our level of giving reveals our depth level of spirituality with our Heavenly Father. If we have a greedy eye, our whole worldview will be greedy – what I get out of life. On the other hand, if we are giving and generous, our worldview will not only be a biblical worldview, but it will be transformational.
“A man with an evil eye hastens after wealth and does not know that want will come upon him” (Prov. 28:22). " ‘Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!’ ” (Matt. 6:19-23). The price for mankind NOT obeying the foundational rules of God’s plan of economy is very high. If you and I do not submit ourselves to the Matthew passage, the whole balance of economy will be out of order. Plus, this is what will give the Antichrist the opportunity to place God’s children in slavery once again. Paul reminded the wealthy Romans of this: “Contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality” (Rom. 12:13). God specifically calls each believer to care for his fellow Christians before giving outside of His fellowship. The way most Christian churches function is to suffer their own congregation by allowing their own members to go hungry, while at the same time spending the “lion’s share” of the offering on staff benefits, programs, and overseas missions. When God said to us that those who don't take care of their own household are worse than unbelievers, He wasn't joking. The same principle applies to the church. Meeting the needs of our own household first is what unites the body of Christ.
PRINCIPLE ONE CHRISTIAN ONENESS: Back when the New Testament church was being formed, the Jews had no social dealings with the local Gentiles. God’s remedy to this dilemma was to set forth a severe famine, which caused many Jewish Christians to suffer. The result – Paul challenged every Christian Gentile church to collect an offering for his Jewish brothers and sisters. God used this offering to dissolve the spiritual, psychological, and physical barriers that had been built out of ignorance. As expected,
God’s plans of economic equality worked miraculously. Paul later shared the dynamics of this happening to the Corinthian church. “At this present time your abundance being a supply for their need, so that their abundance also may become a supply for your need, that there may be equality” (2 Cor.
TO DEMONSTRATE TRUE CHRISTIANITY: Where there is greed – there is war! It is impossible to pursue peace with all men, when one party is seeking to care for its own needs according to its own advancement. The confusion and consternation among the global society are but a magnification of what is going on in the hearts of the people who live within its boundaries. The Antichrist has always sneaked in when the deceit of man’s system of greed corners itself; when his rudeness of selfish rules of economy has finally imprisoned him. Just as greed marks the foreheads of unbelievers, so does giving mark the hearts of true indwelt Christians. When a true Christian gives from the integrity of his heart, God grants him special desires and powers to multiply all of his efforts in his day-to-day life. This is why it is so important for a Christian to give, even if he doesn’t “feel” like it. God sees each and every sacrificial gift offered – particularly when it hurts the most! TO ACTIVATE A THANKFUL HEART: Giving to the needs of fellow Christians causes others to thank God for providing for them. Each and every gift offered puts the other in a position of glorifying God directly and indirectly. This is why giving activates expediential growth in the body of Christ. Giving empowered by the Holy Spirit not only meets practical needs, but results in an overflowing tide of thanksgiving to God and to the one who does the giving. “You will be enriched in everything for all liberality, which through us is producing thanksgiving to God” (2 Cor. 9:11). One of the basics Christianity is that praise and thanksgiving are the building blocks of growing Christians - God’s Church.
BROADENS THE POTENTIAL OF GIVERS: Does God have anything to say about the world’s greedy and political plan of economy? Without question He does! He has always had something to say about mankind supporting the Antichrist’s system of debt mentality and greed investments. It always amazes me how some “Christians” justify using their
stocks/companies that use their profits to murder babies, kill off the elderly, or worse, proclaim their hatred toward our God. All this and they don’t feel one ounce of guilt; all under the banner of “providing security for their family and/or future.” God warned us about stealing from His investments throughout the Old Testament, but one passage in particular clearly marks this warning. " ‘Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me! But you say, “'How have we robbed You?” In tithes and offerings. You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you! Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows’ ” (Mal. 3:8-10). Dear reader, you can push this passage aside, call it legalism, continue to spend God’s money on personal gain, and continue investing His resources (your money) in earthly treasures that provoke Him. BUT, you will never be able to escape the mandates of the New Testament. If you’re like me and you carefully study the New Testament regarding the issues of spending, you will be shocked as to how much is required of the followers of Jesus Christ when it comes to the topic of giving. But I can assure you – it is FAR beyond the 10% spoken of in the Malachi passage (Matt. 19:21; Luke 12:33-34). Jesus said to him, "If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." (Matthew 19:21) "Sell your possessions and give to charity; make yourselves money belts which do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near nor moth destroys. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Luke 12:3334)
Godâ€™s plan of economy cannot be explained by man or his rules of engagement! It is my prayer that both you and I find it impossible to respond to these simple principles with a casual shrug of the shoulders. I desire that these writings will challenge and change the lives of each reader. At the same time, I hope these works are imperiling any lifestyle that disregards the will of God as manâ€™s supreme ruler/measuring stick and cause an encounter, resulting in partaking in Godâ€™s perfect plan of economy!
CHAPTER 10 GOD’S MIRACULOUS PROVISION
Did you know a person can evaluate the condition of a man’s heart by looking in his checkbook? It’s true – the Word tells us that a man’s heart is where his money is. Therefore, when we tug on a man’s wallet, we tug on his heart. This is a principle God makes use of every single day. Most men (and women) believe they are the owners of their own wealth and if they are broke, they are the first to blame another for their poverty. God made us for Himself, empowered us to live life, and gave us the resources to sustain His kingdom work here on this earth. When any of us attempt to take ownership of His allotted resources, it is classified as stealing or robbing from His storehouse (see Malachi 2) and provokes Him to being a jealous God. It is IN Him that we live, move, and have our very being, which should certainly include our earthly treasures. God is the owner and the presider over all the wealth and material possessions in this world – even the collectables that the Antichrist presently has stored up for himself.
When we compare apples with
apples, that piece of paper in our pocket, called a dollar, has little or no value. The only reason it is “burning a hole in our pocket” is because man has placed some kind of sumptuous value upon it. Did you know that one community of Revelation’s Seven Churches is responsible for placing value upon a coin/paper? The township of Thyatira was the first to “invent” money. This community was also known for being the first to enslave women to work outside the home, in order for the men to advance in wealth.
In fact, the definition of Thyatira means “worthless feminine
thing.” This community became one of the primary targets for Satan to establish his Beast (global economy). The aftermath of the work Satan accomplished in this community is still at work in our wallets today. Let’s face it, God is a miraculous God and His economy is everlasting. He wants to show His people His reality and power, to both the saved and the
unsaved world. One means by which He has chosen to do this is through His miraculous provision of money, possessions, and generosity. First of all, we need to define miracle. It is a “supernatural power, being birthed through a natural event, with precise timing to bring glory to God.” It is a normal, natural, and neutral work of God. Miracles are not big, oversized events or happenings to God. They are His normal day- today works. For example: When a child of God prays about a special financial need and an unexpected and unsolicited gift is handed to him or her by one who did not know about the need, the supernatural power of God is revealed from glory to glory. " ‘Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows; ” (Mal. 3:10). God rarely grants permission to “prove” or “test” Him in anything, except in His plan of economy.
There are five wisdom principles in the Word to
explain this Truth. Let’s take a look at them.
PRINCIPLE ONE TO BUILD TRUST: Many times, “Christians” try to worship God and Satan at the same time. Since “the love of money is the root of all evil” (1 Tim 6:10, KJV), the walk from money to Satan is short and oftentimes destructive. When we don’t trust God with His money in our possession, we activate God’s judgment; so He proposes a test on us. The test involves us facing the two altars we claim to serve. God wants us to choose the god we believe serves and cares for us the best – God or Baal (Satan). Whichever god answers by supernatural power ought to be the one in whom we should worship and place our trust. Therefore, when God says, “Test Me in this,” He really wants us to see with our own eyes which god really backs Truth. As seen in the story of Elijah (1 Kings 18:21-40), the prophets of Baal cried out to their god all day long and nothing happened. Then Elijah prayed a prayer of trusting faith and God sent fire from heaven. This heavenly fire
consumed the offering, the altar, and the water around it. God is serious about proving His trust, in His own ways.
PRINCIPLE TWO TO PUT TO SHAME OTHER GODS: I doubt any true indwelt Christian would disagree that money is the “god” of our present day.
“greenback monster” has become an idol in the lives of some of the finest prophets of our day. I remember counseling the limo driver of the most televised evangelist the world over. The confessions that rolled out of this man’s mouth blew me away: limos, Bentleys, gold plated furniture, renting complete hotel floors, etc. That is the short list.
Even though I was
appalled, I knew the love of money would bring evil upon that ministry – and it did. As the world of the Antichrist is expected to seek after money, God desires for HIS children to seek after Him FIRST. Then He will provide all they need afterwards. Seeking after God involves building our lives, motives, heart, and activities around Him, His Son, and the Holy Spirit.
PRINCIPLE THREE TO PURIFY OUR MOTIVES: A requirement of God, in order for us to experience His supernatural power in finances, is actively seeking Him with a pure heart through selfless motives. Review this verse: “If I regard wickedness (vanity) in my heart, The Lord will not hear” (Psalm 66:18, parentheses Hebrew). Vanity is the result of spending money on making oneself look “better off” than he really is. That, my reader, covers a lot of ground. God warns us about vanity. I believe, He will not answer the prayers of those who refuse to listen to this appeal. The requirement for God’s miraculous control in our financial affairs is super-powered by our willingness to let Him examine our hidden motives.
PRINCIPLE FOUR LEAD UNSAVED TO CHRIST: Money, or should I say, the management of money can be a powerful tool to lead an unbeliever to Christ. When believers are “right” with the Lord, and each other, and when each of them are truly experiencing God’s miraculous works of provision, nonbelievers are drawn to Jesus and the local churches they attend. How a nonbeliever can look at a minister who spends his donor dollars on mansions, limos, and gold plated furniture, and not question the leader’s authenticity of God is beyond me. A couple of years ago, I was given the budget details of a church in Phoenix, AZ. Then I was shown the annual budget of one of the countries in Africa and how the annual budget of this local church could care for the entire budget of this poverty-stricken country for four years.
gentleman said, “Wait, there’s more.” He went on to show me the statistics connected to the local churches regarding debt (i.e. building loans, corporate credit cards, etc.). The results confirmed that just the churches in America show more debt than 2/3 of all the countries in the entire world combined. That boggles the mind a bit. Needless to say, that should sound off an alert in the minds of true Christians. It is no wonder why the TRUE Gospel is being silenced in America and why the Emergent Church is showing its ugly head.
PRINCIPLE FIVE TO GLORIFY THE NAME OF THE FATHER: God is NOT going to share His glory with Satan. It’s that simple. Since the love of money is the root of all evil, those that love money (Christian or not) are covertly glorifying Satan instead of God. I know this sounds a bit blunt, but it is authentically real and true. God the Father does great things for His children, so they can pass the real Gospel of His Son on to the next generation. God wants future generations to glorify Him not only in times of need, but when times are abundant in resources. If His children will glorify Him in times of trouble, they certainly will give Him all the credit and honor for the “good times” as well.
"Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving and pay your vows to the Most High; Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me." But to the wicked God says, "What right have you to tell of My statutes And to take My covenant in your mouth? “For you hate discipline, and you cast My words behind you. "When you see a thief, you are pleased with him, and you associate with adulterers. “You let your mouth loose in evil and your tongue frames deceit. "You sit and speak against your brother; you slander your own mother's son. “These things you have done and I kept silence; you thought that I was just like you; I will reprove you and state the case in order before your eyes. (Psalm 50:14-21). We must ask ourselves where our sacrifice of thanksgiving is, are we paying our vows before God and do we call on the name of the Lord when we are in trouble – or do we in our panic reach for that credit card?
CHAPTER 11 SIXTEEN LIES OF THE ANTICHRIST
True indwelt Christians live in two worlds at the same time – man’s reality and God’s reality. The world of the Antichrist is seeking to drag us into bondage by how we individually choose to handle our money. He, Satan, is not able to control our lifestyles unless he is able to enslave us through debt. His system of economics always pulls us down to earth with the same force that the earth calls our bodies to the grave with each day. It is like gravity; it will have its way unless another force overrides the laws of gravity. This is where the realm of God comes in. The world, the flesh, and Satan are always applying their pressures to conform the image of the Beast, which is Satan’s economic system. The Antichrist is gifted at denying and disregarding the Truths of the Holy Scriptures, which are foundational in God’s world of economy. As long as the enemy gets us caught up in his sensory world, we are not apt to be investing, by faith, in the unseen world in which God lives. In fact, it actually takes a “born-again” experience for mankind to partake in the unseen world. Even though it is difficult to believe, the resources of the believer are NOT found in the seen world. For those who have “put all their eggs in this one basket,” they are in for a BIG surprise. “We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Cor.10:5). People who invest in the seen world will form speculations (lies) and arrogant thoughts, which rise up against the mind of the Lord. There are sixteen primary lies which arise against God in the visual world. Let’s review them:
LIE ONE – BECOMING SUCCESSFUL This idealism is manifested when an individual chooses to believe that he, rather than God, is the source and abler of his wealth. "Otherwise, you may say in your heart, 'My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.' But you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day” (Deut. 8:17-18). My guess is there’s nothing more that provokes God to prove He is a jealous God, than for a man to profess that his financial area of life was, or is, attained through his own strength and power. Unless a “body member” is put into the position of depending upon the full Body of Christ to live “hand to mouth,” I personally do not believe one can experientially accept this Truth. LIE 2 – THERE IS NO EXCUSE FOR A CHRISTIAN TO BE POOR This is the most touted statement in the Emergent movement of prosperity doctrine. This group of “believers” uses God like He is some type of a slot machine. They grab and quote Scriptures to further their dementia of demise. God does not care if a man is rich or poor, no matter how much he may “name it and claim it.” He desires to use the “widow’s mite” just as much as the rich man’s towers of grain. These emergent “Christians” don’t even take the time to realize that two-thirds of the world’s population lives on less than $2 a day. A little over 75% of the world’s population will never have the resources available to them to even live out the prosperity doctrines. Western theology can really be ridiculously stupid at times. The Lord is into having his Bridal members for His Son to gather often, to share what they have in common, and to depend on each other for all their basic elements of living. “The rich and the poor have a common bond; The LORD is the maker of them all” (Prov. 22:2).
LIE 3 – WE DETERMINE OUR OWN FINANCIAL CAPACITY We need to discover and embrace the Source of our supply! The Father arranged a very miraculous system of provision by mandating the Holy Spirit to come and live WITHIN the born-again believer. This system of function puts the new believer in the position of looking inward for his resources, instead of depending on an external world that has been temporarily yielded to the Antichrist. Jesus is the same in us as He is in heaven - right now, this very minute. He has brought into our mortal beings the total wealth of heaven.
With that comes the same rule of
engagement of spending or stewardship that presently exists in heaven. Wealth in heaven is for the Divine purpose of glorifying God and expanding the radiant beauty of His vast domain. Remember when Paul said that we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Eph. 1:3)? This is the kind of wealth the Lord is asking us to embrace; not the kind our mortal flesh can muster up, in order for our retirement years to be more predictable. Do you believe in a Sovereign God? Do you believe that sovereignty means “a great, mighty authority who controls all?” Do you believe it is possible God would actually destine the level of wealth or poverty that people are to steward? Or, are you like the “prosperity doctrine” people and dare to tempt God with the thought that all Christians should be independently wealthy? If you are of the latter, you are in for some serious struggles and hardships that DO NOT further the Gospel of Jesus Christ. God does not want us “wheeling and dealing” for resources or security. If we decide to do this, He will multiply our sorrows! “The sorrows of those who have bartered for another god will be multiplied; I shall not pour out their drink offerings of blood, nor will I take their names upon my lips” (Psalm 16:4). LIE 4 – A RESPONSIBLE CHRISTIAN CAN ACHIEVE This lie is the clearest satanic example of the stubbornness of the Antichrist. One of the most common questions asked by True indwelt Christians is, “Won’t Satan ever realize that he is doomed and will lose in the end?” Satan lives by the popularized phrase: “If you first don’t succeed, try, try
Due to the publisherâ€™s guidelines, we are only able to provide you with a preview of this publication.
Thank you for taking the time to review Finances & The End Times. As you read from the Table of Contents, this write is filled with many more inspirational prayers, teachings and encouragements. To Order Complete Work: Click Here
The following pages reveal additional materials available by this author!
Finances And The End Times By Stephen R. Phinney View this Author's Spotlight
Please take advantage of the publishers discount. This book will directly benefit those who care about the world of finances: personally, professionally, and politically. In my studies and research for a book I am writing (Book of Revelation, the Final Frontier), I am discovering many correlations between money, the end-times and personal suffering. "I believe as you read this book, your experience will be much like ours – one of an encounter with the Lord. I have an utmost respect and reverence for the Biblical topic of money, stewardship and the end-times and I believe Dr. Phinney handles this topic with the care and guidance of the Lord. Today holds the greatest opportunity to discuss this matter and we have found that the principles he presents in this book will probably be the best investment you have made this year!" - Robert Cornelius ISBN: 9781300404996 † Christianity † 237 pages
The Principled Patriarch: Embracing Biblical Manhood By Stephen R. Phinney View this Author's Spotlight
The Principled Patriarch is a 30-Lesson Study Guide designed to lead men back to a Biblical tradition of manhood. Our women, children, communities and nation need a few good men – husbands, fathers and leaders who are willing to lead according to the divine Word of Truth. We are in the middle of a cultural battle that wages war against the male and female genders – boys being emasculated and our girls being made masculine. Whatever happen to the patriarchs of our day? Why are the women asserting more male dominance than our males? Why do men default to women in leading their families, homes and communities? These are just some of the questions that get answered in The Principled Patriarch. ISBN: 9781300515739 † Manhood Workbook † 110 pages
Men & Warfare: Equipping Men In Spiritual Warfare By Stephen R. Phinney View this Author's Spotlight
The Christian man is engaged in a spiritual battle even if he does not believe that he is. Satan and his spiritual forces are on the battle line waiting for you each day. A man does not have a choice as to his engagement in this battle, it awaits him each day and there is no way getting around it. If you are saved and have received Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you are in! Be alert and sober, for your enemy, Satan, roams around on the earth to seek whom he can devour. This study is to equip each man with the spiritual tools necessary to war against the world, his flesh and the devil himself. This study can be used as a private devotional - completing one lesson per day or at a pace that is most comfortable. A popular format is in a small group environment – finishing one lesson per week. This workbook contains many helpful tools to equip leaders in leading small groups. ISBN: 9781300514466 † Manhood Workbook † 156 pages
LIFE MISSION: Dr. Phinney is the Founder and Ministry Host of the Institute Of Ministry (IOM America) and founder to the Exchanged Life Global Initiative, as well as the International Fellowship of Exchanged Life (IFEL). Stephen is also the co-founder of the Men Mapping Outreach Ministries, a ministry dedicated to equipping men to be protectors of women, children, community, and nation. Stephen & Jane have been married for over 35 years and have three grown children: Abigail (husband, Quintin Eason), Elizabeth (husband, Nathan Ford) and Jessica. Jane & Steve have also been blessed with seven grandchildren. They are dedicated to the institution of marriage, multigenerational family development, and local multigenerational family church development. They are conference speakers on topics relating to core marriage, multigenerational family, leadership values, and the Exchanged Life (Not I, but Christ). Stephen has authored multiple books/teaching series on spiritual growth and has published over 200 online articles/booklets assisting others in obtaining a Transformational Biblical Worldview. Even though he does NOT put much stock in these degrees, he holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, Masters in Counseling Psychology, and a Doctorate in Ministry. He also holds the status of Doctor of Philosophy Candidate at Oxford Graduate School. Mission Truth is under attack in our culture. “Christians” believe ideas, concepts, values, or supposed facts that are true only because their ideologies demand it – NOT because it is written in the Word of God. Our ministry often hears one of the most popular clichés in our culture today, “That may be true for you, but it is not necessarily true for me.” Gone are the days when right and wrong were black and white. 64
Today’s morality is painted in shades of gray to match the faces of morbid belief. Steve is focused on providing not just a biblical worldview, but a Transformational Biblical Worldview – one that emphasizes changing lives. Worldview Development It is his confession that worldview is birthed through personal identity! This is why it is critical for workers to first understand who they are in Christ before they can lead another in such a discovery. With this in mind, he aims to gently message the identification truths of co-death, burial, resurrection, and ascension into all aspects of ministry communication. It is his experience that if any ministry or its workers focus on worldview issues before experimentally understanding the power of the Cross, these workers could actually lead the Church away from the Truth that will set them free. His primary objective is to equip individuals for the purpose of building up the Body of Christ and to assist in empowering men, women, children, and families to have a greater impact on the communities they serve. This is accomplished by providing Christcentered, Bible-based guidance and training that focuses on issues pertaining to the indwelt Christian’s identity in Christ. He press forward to show individuals their freedom from enslaving mental, emotional, and spiritual conflicts by placing a special emphasis on IDENTITY MATTERS. The ministry style is direct, honest, and truly biblical. Exchanged Life Global Initiative Dr. Phinney has adopted the proposal of the Exchanged Life Global Initiative, which has provided his mission with a proactive pro-vision, in order to revitalize the worldview of uniting Exchanged Life workers throughout the entire world. In addition to our existing strong partnerships, we welcome partnerships with other ministries that focus on the message of the Exchanged Life to join our efforts! 65